NPD figures for August 28, 2011 to October 1, 2011 have arrived. On a dollar basis, it was another down month for the industry although software figures did jump a tiny bit with the late release of the strongly performing Madden.
Nonetheless, hardware sales have arrived, along with the multiplatform top sellers ranking.
Hardware sales dropped 5% from September 2010 even though seven platforms can be purchased at retail instead of six. Excluding 3DS, hardware sales dropped about 22%. On a monthly basis, hardware sales did increase - but since August 2011 was a week shorter than September for tracking, weekly hardware sales only increased by about 3.5%. Given the increase in time from August to September, the DS drop off is particularly notable, as weekly sales fell from over 41,000 per week to less than 30,000 per week. PS3 easily had the largest jump on both a monthly and yearly comparison basis, with weekly sales jumping from 55,000 per week in August to 75,000 per week in September. Wii remained the flattest of all systems, changing virtually nothing year over year or month over month when hardware sales are calculated on a weekly basis.
With the latest set of data, Nintendo announced that DS hardware sales have topped 50m units in the United States according to NPD. By my research, that makes DS the first video game system to top 50m in a single country in the history of the industry, as PS2 is at about 46m in the USA with nothing else particularly close to 50m in any country anywhere. If Nintendo chooses to keep DS around at say, $50-$100, a run to 55m or just past it in the US is still possible. Nintendo also noted that by NPD 273m DS games have sold to date in the USA, for an attach rate (by sell through figures) of about 5.5 games per DS. On a shipment basis, Nintendo had announced 346.3m DS games shipped to the Americas through June 2011 and 55.69m DS systems shipped so the figures do broadly fit together in line with our usual breakdown of the Americas region as 87% US vs. 13% for the remaining major markets (Canada, Mexico and Brazil).
On a 12-month basis, aligned from launch, Wii and X360 remain ahead of the PS2 pace. X360's run ahead of PS2 has been a much more recent trend, but at this point in its shelf life PS2 was starting to rapidly weaken in the US. Wii has simply remained at the PS2 pace to about 4m above it over its time on the market. PS3 may actually briefly match the late PS2 pace as well in the USA, as the later console is positioned to make another run at 5m units in a 12 month period during 2011.
As of September 2011, Wii has sold 36.51m in the USA in a period of 59 months. In the same period, PS3 has sold 17.90m units. Microsoft has sold 28.84m X360s in the USA over the past 71 months. For comparison, PS2 had sold 29.64m units in 59 months, and 34.28m in 71 months in the USA. The PS2 reached 36.55m in the USA in 75 months, so Wii is still about 16 months ahead of the PS2 pace. With PS2 reaching 28.84m in 57 months, Microsoft's X360 is still about 14 months off the PS2 pace (46.1m ltd) in the USA, although X360 continues to eat away at that gap.
NPD reported the following games as the top sellers on a multiplatform basis for September 2011:
01. Madden NFL 12 (360, PS3, Wii, PS2, PSP) Electronic Arts
02. Gears of War 3 (360) Microsoft > 2 million
03. Dead Island (360, PS3, PC) Deep Silver
04. FIFA Soccer 12 (360, PS3, Wii, PS2, PSP, 3DS) Electronic Arts
05. NHL 12 (360, PS3) Electronic Arts
06. Deus Ex: Human Revolution (360, PS3, PC) Square Enix Inc
07. Resistance 3 (PS3) Sony (Corp)
08. Lego Star Wars III: The Clone Wars (Wii, NDS, 360, 3DS, PS3, PSP, PC) LucasArts
09. Call of Duty: Black Ops (360, PS3, NDS, Wii, PC) Activision Blizzard
10. Warhammer 40,000: Space Marine (360, PS3, PC) THQ
More figures will be updated into the software ranking if they become available. In recent months however, Just Dance 2 has routinely topped 100,000 units month in and month out, so its pretty safe to say the entire top ten is over 100,000 units.
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